The Nunc Licet Temple

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The New Church believes that the Lord has given three revelations: Old Testament, New Testament, and the Heavenly Doctrines. With the revelation of the Heavenly Doctrines, the Lord invites us to explore the deeper levels of meaning in the Old and New Testaments. These heavenly teachings were given through a man named Emanuel Swedenborg. The Lord told Swedenborg what to write and showed him many things in the spiritual world.

One of the amazing things that the Lord showed Swedenborg was a beautiful temple in heaven. The temple had crystal walls giving a clear view of the open Word and an angel beside it. Swedenborg also saw the words “Nunc Licet” written above the entrance. These Latin words mean “It is now permitted.” They meant that now it is permitted to enter with understanding into the mysteries of faith. This temple—sometimes called the Nunc Licet Temple—is a symbol of the new understanding that this new revelation from the Lord would make possible.  

The Story

Ideas for discussion

  1. Emanuel Swedenborg saw a magnificent crystal temple. What was unusual about this temple? How does it compare to a church building where you worship or visited?
  2. The temple had two Latin words written above the door: “Nunc Licet.” The Latin inscription means “now it is permitted” and Swedenborg understood that this new revelation would make it possible for people to investigate the mysteries of faith (see True Christian Religion 508:5).
  3. This temple pictures a church in which a person can ask questions and find the answers in the Word. We are encouraged to read the Lord’s Word. “Read the Word and believe in the Lord, and you will see the truths which will be your guides to faith and life” (True Christian Religion 621:3).
  4. The Heavenly Doctrines help people explore spiritual truths that were hidden before and can also help us understand the deeper truths within the Old and New Testaments.
  5. The opening of the Word is a key part of a New Church worship service because it symbolizes wanting to learn about the Lord and His truths from His revelation.
  6. The vision of the Nunc Licet Temple is an invitation to all people to read the Word and seek to understand what the Lord is teaching us—to “enter with understanding” (True Christian Religion 508).

Read more about the Nunc Licet Temple

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